Sunday, May 30, 2010

2 weeks with 2 dogs

I'm not sure if the honeymoon ever really started but it is definitely over. The reality of having a 9 year old dog and a 3 year old dog at the same time has sunken in. The 3 year old has endless energy and has been living in a cage for most of her life so she wants a lot of attention and she wants to play. The 9 year old is used to getting all the attention and isn't as mobile as his new sister so he gets frustrated watching us play fetch with her and having her run circles around him. There have not been any fights (and maybe I'm just being paranoid) but the 9 year old definitely seems pissed at the 3 year old after she's run circles around him and sounds like he would attack her if he could catch her. The trainer said I should just let them be dogs and work it out but I can't do that. I can't risk one of them getting bitten and having a whole new list of anxiety issues to deal with.

It's not all that bad really. The cat has accepted the new dog (which she definitely didn't at first) and now treats him like the old dog. The dogs get along really well when they're in the house and there are thousands of Kodak moments every day with them sleeping next to each other and licking each other's faces. Plus the new dog is not nearly as screwed up as her previous owner described her as being. And the biggest plus is my husband helps out with the dogs now which is something that he rarely did before.

I don't regret my decision. I have always wanted two dogs and my old dog needed a buddy (all his buddies moved away and he was seriously lacking in socialization). I gave a dog who didn't have such a great start a new life. But no matter all the good reasons for adopting the dog, the heart of it is that I adopted this dog for selfish reasons. I considered how it would affect my old dog and cat, my husband and my own daily schedule but I don't think I was realistic about how great the impact would be.

My husband thinks that part of the reason I wanted another dog was to help me get out of a rut that I've been in for years. That getting another dog would force me to get my shit together and organize my time more efficiently. I think that subconsciously that is exactly what I did. But in order for it to be successful I'm going to have to try a hell of a lot harder than I have been. But it will be worth it. In three months I will look back at this transition period and take pride in the progress that has been made. But right now I'm a little overwhelmed and hoping that all the members of my household don't resent me for putting us in this position.

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